A footballer at the centre of a betting fraud trial told police his co-accused were going to place bets on him being booked in a League Cup clash against Hibernian.
Kane Hester, from Montrose, who plays for Elgin City, was booked in the 29th minute of the Betfred Cup tie in July 2019.
Although he was carded, he maintained to police it was not deliberate.
He is accused of forming a scheme with three others from the Angus town to con £13,583 from a bookmaker.
Pals told Hester about bet
On the second day of their trial, Dundee Sheriff Court heard a taped police interview involving the striker — Elgin’s all-time top scorer — who told investigating officers he had a poor disciplinary record.
He told police: “I have been booked four to five times. I’m an aggressive player.”
When asked what had happened before the tie in question, he told police: “My friends told me they were going to put a bet on me to score or be carded.
“They told me before the game and said they would give me a bit of money.”
When asked who these friends were, he named co-accused Calvin Parrot and Brody Myres.
He added: “I was sat at work. My mate (Parrot) showed me a screenshot of his betting app.
“He said something along the lines of ‘please, please get booked’.”
Hester said of the key incident in the match: “I was pushed off the ball by the opposition player.
“I extended my leg out to get the ball and got his calf. I caught him.
“It’s definitely a card.
“It could have been a red card.
“I picked up a card but when I was playing it wasn’t in my head to get one.
“I wasn’t thinking about anything other than the game.
“I hadn’t even decided whether I was actually going to do it.
“I’ve never gone out to get deliberately booked.”
On the opening day of the trial, Grade One Scottish referee Willie Collum, who officiated the match, said on reflection he should have sent off Hester for the challenge.
He said there was no reason to think it had been a deliberate attempt to be booked.
The court was told about a series of bets which were deemed suspicious after the match.
Prosecutors allege Hester, 27, Parrot, 28, Myres, 29 and 26-year-old Findlay Soutar duped bookmaker Bet365 out of £13,583.
They deny forming a fraudulent scheme to obtain money by placing bets Hester would “purposely commit a foul during the course of the match” and be booked at Borough Briggs Stadium in Elgin.
The charge states the four men carried out the con between July 20 and August 2 2019 and received £17,333.32 in payments from Bet365.
It also alleges £13,583.32 was obtained as unlawful winnings after five separate bets were placed.
An alternative version of the charge alleges they cheated at gambling by placing five bets on Hester being booked and he was shown a yellow card for a foul, leading to them falsely obtaining £13,583.32 in winnings.
Hester, 27, Soutar, 25, Parrot, 26, and Myles, 28, have all denied the charge and the trial continues.